Local school district reacts to CDC guidelines for Fall reopening

Local News

ST MARYS, ELK COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — The CDC released guidelines for schools to reopen safely in the fall, but some educators said they’re not satisfied.

“I look at them as very fluffy. There’s a lot of leeway in these things to interpret a lot, and I would rather see something that says, ‘Hey. This is what you have to do’,”St. Marys Superintendent Dr. Brian Toth said.

Toth said he’s looking for more direction on what specific schools need to do and what to avoid, so students can get back in the classroom safely.

There’s the obvious, like wearing a face mask, but also suggesting students bring their own lunch every day and modifying classroom layouts to maintain social distancing.

Toth said that’s not always feasible.

“None of our classrooms, even the most modern, were built to have 6-feet between every student and the teacher,” he said.

Other guidelines include no more field trips or large events.

“We can certainly not have people attend an event and just broadcast it would be a way to do it, but I don’t think that’s gonna go over big with the community,” Toth said.

The St. Marys School District has been remote for the past two and a half months.

While the guidelines may be difficult to implement and enforce, Toth said he wants to see students return to in-person classes for the fall.

“The kids do miss being with their friends. they actually miss their teachers, now give them a day back in school and that might change but they do miss those kinds of things,” he said.

The Pennsylvania Secretary of Education said schools should expect to reopen in the fall, but no official decision has been made.

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